Spring seems a little brighter this year! Having been through not only the darkness of winter but also the long winter of COVID-19 that has engulfed us, spring is a welcome and tangible sign that the darkness will soon be gone. Along with the usual blessings of warmth and longer days, I eagerly anticipate a future filled with safe group gatherings, embraces and mask-free smiles! While these aren’t fully realized yet, we can see them on our horizon.
The message and meaning of Easter add emphasis to the joy of spring. The Lenten season reminds us that living a life of intentional mission involves much sacrifice. I have a habit on Good Friday of reading again a favorite book by one of my favorite authors. Six Hours One Friday, written by Max Lucado, has become for me a loved tradition. He reminds me that my life is not futile, and that death is not final.
The message of Easter can be relevant to institutions as well as individuals. The mission of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College is ever before me as I continue with my life’s work. Working on a campus filled with mission-minded women, who toiled and sacrificed for the good of this College, provides me with a ready reminder of what has come before. In the words of Dr. Jeanne Knoerle, SP, ’49:
This world is important and worth whatever energy it takes to contribute to keeping it alive and making it better. Working in higher education places us at a powerful intersection, an explosive point of energy and light, where faith is informed by the vitality of the intellect and where the intellect is energized by the intensity of faith. For those of us called to the life of the mind, nothing could be more fulfilling.
Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College was created in mission and sacrifice. The mission has evolved and changed with the needs of our world and is as important and needed as ever before. The future is indeed unfolding before us. And, as we maintain the powerful intersection of faith and intellect, or virtue and knowledge, at the core of our work, we are well-supported.
Our God of Providence has provided many avenues of opportunity and blessing in recent years. The faithfulness of our alums and friends has created a renaissance at SMWC. Sister Dawn Tomaszewski ’74, General Superior, first brought this idea to our attention. Speaking at our annual Christmas celebration for faculty and staff, she asserted:
Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College is experiencing renaissance. As sponsors of the College, we Sisters of Providence are delighted that in this generation more land is needed to support the educational mission of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College.
Renaissance, rebirth and resurrection… wow! These are wonderful blessings and ours to enjoy. We have much for which to be thankful, and I am. I count you among my blessings and anticipate with eager expectation what God may do amongst us next!